Evolution on the Move

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Dr Bodsworth is the co-author of a new research paper in the Proceedings of the Royal Society entitled 'Evolution on the move: specialization on widespread resources associated with rapid range expansion in response to climate change'.

The paper investigates how generalist species and phenotypes are expected to perform best under rapid environemental change and how, in contract to this view, increased use of a single host plant is found to be associated with the recent climate-driven range expansion of the UK brown argus butterfly.

Filed assays, undertaken during Dr Bodsworth's PhD research, of female host plant preference across the UK reveal a diversity of adaptations to host plants in long-established parts of the range, whereas butterflies in recently colonised areas are more specialized.

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